(photo credit: )
Modi’in Center, Lower Level
Tel: (08) 971-6701
‘How can you still eat?” asks my dining partner. “It’s my job to eat,” I answer as I happily put another spoonful of rich chocolate souffle into my mouth.
I can understand why my dining partner was surprised. By the time the desserts came out, we had already eaten a ridiculous amount of food. But who can resist a warm nut pie with vanilla ice cream (28 NIS) or a chocolate souffle with chocolate cookie ice cream (28 NIS)? Angelo’s serves delicious food – and plenty of it. The portions are very generous. And if you go there, bring a friend because most of the dishes are sumptuous enough for two.
Angelo’s is an uber-hip café located on the ground floor of the otherwise not so hip Modi’in center. The walls of the restaurant are painted in shades of yellow, orange, red and white with somewhat mysterious aluminum clouds suspended from the ceiling. There is indoor seating with very comfortable black leather chairs and outdoor seating on a porch that can be kept open or closed depending on the weather.
The menu at Angelo’s is what I like to call “Italian-inspired Israeli café cuisine” – i.e. large salads, pasta and sandwiches. They also have very popular breakfast specials, including pastries baked onsite and a variety of egg dishes, including shakshuka. The menu may not be all that creative, but it is definitely well executed.
We were there on a weekday afternoon and there were a few people sitting outside, but we had the interior all to ourselves. They had great music playing, which was loud enough to be audible but not so loud as to drown out conversation.
While we waited for our meal, the waitress brought us rolls with a variety of dips that are all made onsite: tehina, eggplant, sun-dried tomato and jam. We barely had a chance to sample them when the food arrived.
My dining partner and I agreed that the best dish we had was the haloumi stir-fried salad (43 NIS). The sauteed cheese and mushrooms were served on top of a large green salad with tomatoes and cucumbers and sprinkled generously with vinaigrette, sesame and sunflower seeds. The contrast of warm cheese and mushrooms with the cool salad played perfectly together.
The focaccia (32 NIS) was also particularly good. When I saw it on the menu, I didn’t know what to think about pesto and feta cheese together topped with roasted peppers and eggplant, but it worked very well. It came served on a wooden board and could have been mistaken for a pizza – again, big enough for two.
The pasta was good but not exciting. The cheese ravioli (42 NIS) was well paired with the Neapolitan sauce, and the fettuccine (NIS 40) also went well with the cream, white wine and mushroom sauce.
I always judge a restaurant by its lemonade, and Angelo’s lemonade (NIS 14) did not disappoint. With pulp floating on the top and a touch of tartness, it was just the right combination of sweet and sour. Another beverage, the iced coffee (NIS 19), was also delicious.
The cafe was rather quiet the afternoon we were there, but I have been to Angelo’s on a Friday morning and the place is hopping. It’s a great spot to get together with friends but maybe not the place to go if you’re seeking a little privacy.
Angelo’s is open at night and has a bar, in case you want to top off the evening with a drink.